Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Coal in Tracy manager's stocking :Updated:

Just in time for Santa's trip down the chimeny, a Web site has decided to gift Tracy personnel director Maria Olvera with a sockful of coal by naming her the nation's 11th-worst boss for 2009.

While you can read the inglorious top-25 list at the eBossWatch web site, I'm taking this shot at Olvera with a grain of salt. One big enough to season my entire Christmas goose.

Because the ranking seems to stem from a lawsuit filed earlier this year by a pair of disgruntled former Tracy workers who accuse Olvera of demeaning employees, using abusive and degrading language, and generally creating a hostile work environment.

The pair — Elizabeth Allred and Ethel McFarland — also say they were fired in retribution for having complained about their working conditions.

Keep in mind that this lawsuit is pending and that what Allred and McFarland allege — the seeming basis for BossWatch's ranking — has not yet been proven substantial in court. It's just a formal accusation. We don't really know if Olvera deserves a public lambasting or an exoneration.

So while this might make great fodder for someone wanting to prove a point against the city — I mean, saying Tracy employs the 11th-worst boss in the whole friggin' country is pretty sensational — I say that until the lawsuit is settled, Olvera doesn't deserve the serving of compressed carbon.

UPDATE: City Manager Leon Churchill defends Olvera here, and his response seems far more measured than the ranking from eBossWatch.